Brighton vs. Burnley
Venue: Amex Stadium
The last round of English Premier League matches before the international break kickoff’s from the Amex Stadium where Brighton hosts bottom club Burnley on Friday evening.
The Clarets have failed to find the back of the net in three straight matches and while they could be forgiven for that barren run which has included games against high-flyers Tottenham Hotspur and Chelsea, failure to find the back of the net at fellow strugglers West Bromwich Albion paints a gloomy picture of the team’s present state and they must ensure to do better against a Seagulls’ side that always guarantee goals.
We expect Burnley to end their 270-minutes goal drought against a suspect Brighton defence and with Neal Maupay back in the home side’s line-up; they should equally get a goal of theirs as we tip this match to end in a draw.
Prediction: Brighton 1 – 1 Burnley
Southampton vs. Newcastle United
Venue: Saint Mary’s Stadium
Fifth-place Southampton are home to Newcastle United, the first game the Saints have to play in the absence of the injured Danny Ings, who is set to be sidelined for the next six weeks.
The England forward sustained a knee injury and his prolonged absence should hand Theo Walcott an opportunity to partner Che Adams against the Magpies’ defence.
Despite keeping clean-sheets in their last two home games, Southampton should be wary of a Newcastle team that have scored in five straight matches and should be confident of extending that run. We expect both teams to score, over 2.5 goals and Southampton to claim a first home win in this fixture since 2016.
Prediction: Saints 2 – 1 NUFC
Everton vs. Manchester United
Venue: Goodison Park
Manchester United’s troubles could be compounded as they travel to an Everton team equally in desperate need of redemption after losing two games on the bounce.
The Red Devils followed up their weekend defeat to Arsenal with a toothless performance and subsequent defeat in the UEFA Champions League and must now find the proper balance and team selection in other to improve on their 15th position before the international break.
James Rodriguez is expected to be fit for this contest, as Everton struggled to create anything worthy of note in the loss to Newcastle United in the Colombians absence. We expect both teams to cautiously approach this game considering their recent poor form, but regardless, the goals should still flow at both ends and a draw to settle this fixture for a third successive time.
Prediction: Everton 1 – 1 Man Utd
Crystal Palace vs. Leeds United
Venue: Selhurst Park
Crystal Palace welcomes a Leeds United team that were on the receiving end of a heavy defeat against Leicester City on Monday night.
Leeds for the first time since their return to the topflight were totally outclassed and deservedly lost to the Foxes and should be desperate for an instant response before the international break.
They face a Palace team still heavily reliant on Wilfried Zaha, a major worry against a compact Leeds team. Despite missing numerous scoring chances in the last game, Patrick Bamford should once again lead the line for Leeds and added to the tactical brilliance of Marcelo Bielsa, we tip Leeds to secure an away win here, a third straight on the road.
Prediction: Palace 0 – 2 Leeds
Chelsea vs. Sheffield United
Venue: Stamford Bridge
Chelsea should be confident of extending their unbeaten run and clean-sheet record as they welcome Sheffield United to Stamford Bridge. Times have changed a lot for both teams from the last time they met on this ground 15 months ago, as the Blades rallied back from two-goals down to secure a draw before thoroughly beating the Blues in the reverse fixture.
However, Chelsea have found their mojo in recent weeks, thanks largely to the form of their new signings, notably Edouard Mendy, who has kept five clean-sheets in all competitions and should be confident of increasing that tally against a struggling opposition.
We expect this to be a one-sided scoring game with Chelsea carrying day and inflicting more misery on Sheffield who should end game-week 8 in the bottom three on the log.
Prediction: Chelsea 2 – 0 Sheffield
West Ham United vs. Fulham
Venue: London Stadium
The final game of Saturday takes us to the London Stadium as West Ham United hosts Fulham in the London derby.
The Hammers have taken two points off their last three matches, games which included meetings against heavyweights Tottenham Hotspur, Manchester City and Liverpool, so it’s understandable they should feel eager to take all maximum points against the Cottagers, whose recent record in the London derby isn’t anything encouraging.
On Fulham’s part, they come into the game on the back of a first win of the season but that feel good feeling might just be short-lived against a West Ham team who have all-round quality in comparison to the visitors and should earn a first win in four league matches.
Prediction: West Ham 3 – 0 Fulham
West Brom vs. Tottenham
West Bromwich Albion welcomes Tottenham Hotspur to the Hawthorns in Sunday’s first game. Spurs have found success every time they have played on the road this season and they should have absolutely no problems extending that run against a Baggies team struggling for form, inspiration and confidence.
We tip Tottenham to continue their excellent away record by clinching maximum points, a clean sheet and a Son Heung-min goal.
Prediction: West Brom 0 – 3 Spurs
Leicester vs. Wolverhampton
Venue: King Power Stadium
Leicester City and Wolverhampton are set to meet in the run-up to the weekend’s big match at the Etihad Stadium. The Foxes were in devastating form at Elland Road on Monday night and must replicate that form if they are to overcome a solid Wolverhampton Wanderers team that in all honesty haven’t looked their best this season.
Jamie Vardy and Raul Jimenez are both teams’ best bet for a goal but one or two of the supporting cast on both ends could play a decisive role, Harvey Barnes and Daniel Podence top of that selection.
This game between two evenly balanced teams should produce goals and a draw to ensure both sides have a share of the points.
Prediction: Leicester 2 – 2 Wolves
Man City vs. Liverpool
Venue: Craven Cottage
Manchester City welcomes Liverpool to the Etihad Stadium in the game of the round. The Citizens have been boosted by the return to fitness of Gabriel Jesus, the Brazilian forward coming off the bench to score in the midweek UEFA Champions League home win against Olympiacos.
The presence of an out-and-out centre forward in the hosts’ line-up shouldn’t be pleasing news to the Reds’ backline, who despite not conceding to a high-scoring Atalanta team wouldn’t be best represented with Joe Gomez and Joel Matip at the heart of defence against a rapid City forward line.
With the red-hot form of Diogo Jota, it’s expected that the Portuguese forward gets the nod to start ahead of a struggling Roberto Firmino. We expect both teams to find the back of the net and Liverpool to do just enough to claim maximum points against a Manchester City team struggling to replicate the high standards of the previous seasons under Pep Guardiola.
Prediction: Man City 1 – 2 Liverpool
Arsenal vs. Aston Villa
Venue: Emirates Stadium
The rounds final game takes us to the Emirates Stadium as Arsenal hosts Aston Villa, a game marking the return of Emiliano Martinez to his former hunting ground.
The Villains’ brilliant start to the campaign has recently been checkmated with successive losses to Leeds United and Southampton and they will be desperate to make that bad run three on the bounce.
Arsenal have been far from spectacular this season, but have found the extra energy and determination to grind out victories even when they do not play well.
A major downside for the Gunners is how they line-up tactically in attack with their most reliable source for goals, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang playing out on the wings meaning Alexandre Lacazette has to deal with the physical attention of Tyronne Mings and Ezri Konsa.
We expect this to be a closely contested encounter with goals at both ends and a draw settling the game.
Prediction: Arsenal 1 – 1 Villa
Disclaimer- Predictions are just for fun, based on analysis. We do NOT sell or guarantee results.
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